Why don’t those poets just shut up already?!

This is a conversation between me and my work buddy Charlie. It took place five minutes into his first day of work.
Me: Hey!
Charlie: Hey.
Me: So I hear you’re a poet?
Charlie: Where’d you hear that?
Me: Word gets around fast here.
Awkward silence.
Me: there’s a real battle in this town between the spoken word poets and the written word poets.
Charlie: why don’t those spoken word poets just shut up already?!
Me: I know, right!?
After that we were instant friends. The next day when the administrative staff asked him if he needed any stationary supplies he asked for a podium – have podium will travel – ya gotta love that. Hey, wait a minute; maybe he is one of those spoken word poets. The arrival of the podium saw me break into a round of Don’t Cry for me Argentina.
Charlie is from Prince Edward Island (aka PEI) for my bloggowers outside of Canada, Prince Edward Island is a tiny province off the coast of the Atlantic Ocean and is known for red earth, Anne of Green Gables, potatoes and podium traveling poets.
Charlie Sark's poetry is published in two poetry anthologies and on the PEI Poet's website. The first anthology was just released and is called This is an Honour Song. This is an Honour Song is a collection of narratives, poetry, and essays exploring the broad impact of the 1990 resistance at Kanehsatà:ke, otherwise known as the “Oka Crisis.” Charlie's poem in that collection is called "Enemy Tongues'". The other anthology is called Lighting the Eighth Fire and is a collection of essays by Indigenous scholars. His poem in that collection is called "Kulu, Cops and You." It is a poem that was previously commissioned for the PEI CBC Poetry Faceoff (that's hockey talk for poets). Here's a review of the collection. Both books are put out by Arbeiter Ring Publishing. Charlie will be dropping off a copy of my debut novel Dead Frog on the Porch to the John K. Sark Memorial School (named after his grandfather), so the children in the community can check it out.
Charlie is a member of the Lennox Island First Nation and his family owns and operates the Indian Art & Craft Store on Malpeque Bay. It features Aboriginal arts and crafts from the area along with international Aboriginal arts and crafts.
Here’s a video that introduces you to Charlie’s family and the store. If you’re on the island this summer drop by … if you see a poet with a podium, you’ll know who it is.


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